Attachment-based Sleep Support
Struggling with sleep with your infant or toddler? Wary about sleep training but always hearing it’s the only solution? You are definitely not alone.
Following the birth of my daughter in early 2019, after nearly a decade of work as an attachment-informed therapist, I became obsessed with infant sleep. Perhaps you can relate!? I knew I didn't want to sleep train, but I still wanted to get as much sleep as possible! My pursuit of better sleep, without compromising our attachment bond or my maternal instincts, led me to take a comprehensive course in sleep coaching (the Baby Led Sleep Certification through Isla-Grace). I have also learned a lot from Lyndsey Hookway, founder of the Holistic Sleep Coaching Program.
The sleep coaching industry is not regulated, and has become pretty big business. Most of what is available out there is some version of “cry it out”, even if called by other names -- controlled crying, spaced soothing, Ferber method, etc. Even many people claiming to offer “gentle sleep training” are still promoting methods that instruct parents to stop responding to their baby’s cries and falsely promise that this will teach baby to “self-soothe”. These methods do "work" for some babies, but they definitely don't work for all babies, and many parents know instinctively that they don't want to leave their babies to cry.
Parents who want to sleep train will find many resources available to them. But if you know that you aren’t comfortable with sleep training, or if you've tried it and found it was not a good fit for you or your child, I’d love to help you! I am passionate about providing a truly gentle, attachment-focused alternative to sleep training.
To get a feel for me and my approach, check out my Instagram account!
- You fill out a comprehensive intake which I use to try and get a full picture of who your baby is, who you are as a person and as a parent, and what might be contributing to the sleep challenges you are experiencing. (We want to get to the underlying issues, which sleep training does not.)
- If I believe there may be an underlying medical or feeding issue, I will refer you out as needed to other professionals.
- We talk about normal expectations of infant sleep (which are often very different than what new parents have been led to expect).
- We first make changes to the “low hanging fruit” that can improve sleep without having to change what you’re doing overnight -- daytime routines, nutrition, sleep hygiene, bedtime routine, etc.
- We tweak naps and wake windows if needed, and apply current sleep science to your situation.
- We look at YOUR health, wellness and self-care, and your beliefs about sleep as well as about yourself as a parent.
- We re-assess, and then we work on making changes to anything that still feels unmanageable or unsustainable to you, as gently and responsively as possible.
This is not a quick-fix approach, but it does work! I am passionate about providing an alternative for parents who do not want to sleep train, but still desperately need help to improve the family sleep situation.
If you are curious to learn more, please email me at sarah@ bodymindcounselling.ca. I'd be happy to help you figure out if it's a fit for you!
Rather than offering packages, like many sleep consultants, I have decided instead to try a slightly different pricing structure — one that should make it easier for people wishing to use their extended benefits to cover this service. Please feel free to check in with me about what would best meet your needs and to ask any questions about structure and pricing.
Initial intake session - $240 (including GST)
- Advance review of your comprehensive intake form
- 75 minute intake call (video or phone). These intake calls are thorough and include education about normal infant sleep, as required. We will discuss your concerns as well as your goals.
- Follow-up documentation of our call by email, complete with personalized initial suggestions. My follow-up emails are thorough and jam-packed.
An initial intake session is not required to work with me, but it is suggested for anyone who is concerned about their child’s sleep, rather than looking for general suggestions or reassurance. If after reading your intake form I believe I can help you in a simple 30 or 60 minute call, I will tell you so.
After your intake session, follow-up conversations will be charged at the hourly rate below.
I am available by the hour if you would like to discuss your concerns, get some suggestions, or even just talk to someone who will understand your struggles and will not tell you that sleep training is the solution to it all.
$160 per hour, or $80 per 30 minutes - includes a summary/documentation/written suggestions after each call. (This rate is slightly higher than my standard counselling rate, because it involves extra time on my part to summarize our conversation and send you an email with suggestions and next steps.)
Single Issue: Suitable for smaller concerns, or for clients who have worked with me in the past and have a new smaller challenge to address. You send me an email with one primary concern, and I compose a response with things to consider, suggestions and resources. Includes 2 follow-up emails for clarifying questions and discussion: $50
One week of support: Includes 5 emails over the space of a week to answer questions and to support you or help you troubleshoot while implementing changes (only available after an initial intake): $100
(Note: Email support is not likely reimbursable by extended benefits.)
I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor in the province of British Columbia. Many extended benefits plans will cover my services if you are a resident of BC -- please check yours to be sure.